TV Star of Xena Joins B'way Grease!

News   TV Star of Xena Joins B'way Grease!
 
Lucy Lawless, known to TV viewers as Xena, Warrior Princess in the series of the same name, joined the cast of the long-running Broadway revival of Grease! as Rizzo for seven weeks (through Oct. 19), starting Sept. 2 and officially opening Sept. 3.
Lucy Lawless; Lawless with Marilu Henner at the opening night party
Lucy Lawless; Lawless with Marilu Henner at the opening night party Photo by Photo credit: Starla Smith

Lucy Lawless, known to TV viewers as Xena, Warrior Princess in the series of the same name, joined the cast of the long-running Broadway revival of Grease! as Rizzo for seven weeks (through Oct. 19), starting Sept. 2 and officially opening Sept. 3. The revival has become a haven for actors from other media to make their Broadway debuts, such as Brooke Shields, Joe Piscopo, Chubby Checker and Bruce "Cousin Brucie" Morrow.

Appearing alongside Xena are Brian Bradley (Vince), Marilyn Cooper (Miss Lynch), Sean McDermott (Danny), Melissa Dye (Sandy), and Kevin-Anthony (Teen Angel). Cooper won a Tony for her work in Woman Of The Year; McDermott starred as Chris in . Hunter Foster and Jennifer Cody, who've been playing Roger and Cha-Cha, are on their real-life honeymoon, so David Josefsberg and Lesley Jennings have taken over their roles.

Grease! reopened April 8 after a six-week hiatus with comic Joe Piscopo and Olympic gold medalist Dominque Dawes in featured roles. The show went through its first series of cast changes May 6, when Jeff Conaway, best known as Bobby the struggling actor on TV's "Taxi" and now a featured performer on "Babylon 5," took over as deejay Vince Fontaine, and Darlene Love, the 1960s songstress, took over for Lee Truesdale as Teen Angel.

Grease! had been slated to close Feb. 23 at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre to make way for the Annie revival, but the unexpected closing of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Whistle Down the Wind in Washington DC allowed Annie to switch to the larger Martin Beck, which in turn allowed Grease! to continue at the O'Neill.

Grease! went on hiatus Feb. 23 as scheduled, but reopened April 8 with the new cast. For tickets, call (212) 239-6200. You can also order tickets on Playbill On-Line.

-- By Robert Viagas and David Lefkowitz

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